275: Confessions of a GameStop Employee - Part Three

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 6 NEXT
 

Confessions of a GameStop Employee - Part Three

In part three of our four-part series, Ben the GameStop employee has a showdown with Soccer Mom.

Read Full Article

Fantastic read. I deal with crazy soccer moms all the time seeing as I work at a Chuck E Cheese, and like your place. Most people are only doing it cause they don't have many goals, are in between school, or are simply just goddamn bored.

I always wanted to work at the local EBGames, but after reading these, I may change my mind.....then again these stories do seem like they'd be funny to tell.

Having Worked in GAME for half a year, i Can Agree with everything here. Game Retail Drove me Mad >.<

I had plenty of run ins with soccer mom types in my days at GameStop, but my district manager would have NEVER screwed me like that.

So I can get full credit for turning in a "used" game and all I need to do is throw a tantrum..gotcha. I'll remember that next time I want to trade up.

Here's a nice "observed" story that I was reminded of reading this. I was shopping in a Gamestop when a little kid comes in, probably 12, with his brother who is even younger, asking for COD4. Naturally (well, I don't know how well most do it, but to me this was an easy choice) he refused. The kid offered his mother's ID and credit card. He told the boy he could not give him the game, he could only give it to someone who is at least 18. The kid says OK. He walks out the door to a minivan parked and idling right in front of the store. He comes back with his mom, who of course left the van there, running, and then begins to berate the employee for making her get out of the car. She tells him to just give him the game, which he says he still can't because of the rating, he can only accept payment and hand the game directly to her. She tells him that he can decide for himself if it's appropriate or not, but it takes a few more minutes of her being pissed off before she just grabs the credit card to buy the game like she's been greatly inconvenienced. It was utterly ridiculous, and of course, the worst part is that the kids were both just standing there the whole time watching this ridiculous display. I rather feel sorry for those kids, though I felt the one at least handled it rather better than his mother did. Hopefully he'll grow up smarter.

It's like people are deaf... I can only imagine what working for a store like that must be like.

I hate people like that...who don't listen and then feel entitled.

GeneticallyModifiedDucks:
It's like people are deaf... I can only imagine what working for a store like that must be like.

It's often very frustrating, but I don't think any more so than any other retail job. The general public has an almost astounding lack of respect for retail employees (or so it seems). You just find ways to cope.

Easiest way I deal with it is to focus on the customers who are actually there to enjoy themselves. Parents who smile graciously when I help them out, kids who walk out of the store saying "Thank you!" while clutching a new DS game, or the occasional regular who chats up the staff for fifteen minutes about the newest games. That makes the job worth it, even though I occasionally want to take an Xbox and crack it over the head of some of our customers.

I still have yet to forgive people for their inability to put game cases back where they found them.

Man, I've got some CRAZY stories from working in retail. Some people are actual scientifically-categorized MORONS. Do you actually think we're going to back away from policy because you claim to shop here often?

Heh, I learned to use an even more elaborate version of the shrink wrap machine while working in chemical manufacturing. We got pre-perforated, flattened plastic sleeves to go around bottle caps and a real, honest to God heat gun (not a hair dryer, this thing looks and feels like an industrial face melter). You had to finagle the stupid sleeve open and shove around the bottle cap at just the right place and then hold it there while you blasted it with heat. But you couldn't hold it too tightly or it would wrinkle; and you couldn't hold it too loosely or the top would shrink faster and the sleeve would go flying off into space; and you had to keep moving the gun closer and further from the sleeve or you'd melt holes in it and have to start all over again.

Of course, if that wasn't enough to make it fun, you also had to worry about the fact that the chemical in the bottle you were sealing was heat sensitive and would melt if you didn't give it time to cool off between screw-ups. Also, if you kept your fingers in the path of the heat gun too long they would feel like they were melting too and you'd drop the (glass) bottle, destroying it along with about $1,000-worth of chemical. It was an exciting job, lemme tell you.

Also, this series is exactly why I could never, EVER work in retail. I would literally punch someone out - I just don't have that kind of tolerance for real-time idiocy on a daily basis. x.x

He's upset his District Manager did that to him? My DIRECT SUPERVISORS do that to me at the movie theater, and it pisses me off to no end. My employees better be happy I back them up even though my boss doesn't.

JeanLuc761:

It's often very frustrating, but I don't think any more so than any other retail job. The general public has an almost astounding lack of respect for retail employees (or so it seems). You just find ways to cope.

The things I've read about in this series are exactly the same for any retail job. I've sold men's clothing, computers, worked in a book store and worked at a Target. The only thing that changes are the details concerning what you sell, the services your company offers customers and what clothes you're required to wear. Retail is a millstone for the human soul.

Costumer is always king right? No fuck you. This woman had a specific warning that she couldn't get a refund in a new game. If they cannot be reasonable, you stop being as well and kick them out of the store. It cost me a job once because I followed protocol and I don't regret it at all. People need to read and listen on the things that they are going to buy.

Rant over.

Chad Brumfield:

JeanLuc761:

It's often very frustrating, but I don't think any more so than any other retail job. The general public has an almost astounding lack of respect for retail employees (or so it seems). You just find ways to cope.

The things I've read about in this series are exactly the same for any retail job. I've sold men's clothing, computers, worked in a book store and worked at a Target. The only thing that changes are the details concerning what you sell, the services your company offers customers and what clothes you're required to wear. Retail is a millstone for the human soul.

Case in point ;)

The more of these i read the more i question what i could be in for everytime i call up my local GAME asking if they have vacancies yet.

After reading this I can only say Thank god I live in a small town in Kansas. I roam my local gamestop weekly and know just about everybody who shops and works there, and I have never seen anyone do anything like this "soccer mom" idiot. In fact, I was in my local gamestop when a woman in her late 30's walked in and began asking about some DS games, the sales guy told her that she could return any used game for any reason in 7 days, which she responded to with shock, awe and glee. She buys a mario game for her kid and leaves, just as I'm leaving the store she returns and tells the man "Thank you for telling me that used game stuff, it turns out, my kid already has this game." See that? not everyone is bitches.

well....I think that it's her fault for not heeding his advice about used video games.....I mean that what keeps gamestop in business....anyway I don't think that I would be able to handle that situation....especially when his district manager stabs him in the back! I would be more than beside my self with anger I might even quit on the spot!

I've had that exact same scenario happen to me before. Only thing is we had a really kick-ass crew on staff at that store and I miss working with 'em a lot, but I sure as hell don't miss the dumbass customers.

He's a better man than me. A lady once showed up at noon (the time becomes important later) looking for a seafood platter she had ordered, but the department head hadn't ordered from the distributor.

I was the only one on in the department, so the next thing you know I'm running all over the store getting the stuff together to make one, recruiting two other guys from the meat department to help get it together ASAP.

The whole time I'm getting flack from this woman saying "I've got company coming at noon" in other words, when she showed up. The only reason she walked away with the platter is because I hadn't heard her last dig at us as I handed it to her. Kind of wished I'd sneezed all over the tray at that point.

Jedoro:
He's upset his District Manager did that to him? My DIRECT SUPERVISORS do that to me at the movie theater, and it pisses me off to no end. My employees better be happy I back them up even though my boss doesn't.

You think getting thrown under the bus is limited to retail jobs? I've lost count of the number of times I've been thrown under the bus this month alone. I know it's more than 10, and I've only worked 8 days this month.

I try not to be a jerk when I'm dealing with people in retail, because of the stories I hear with some of the retail vets I drink with regularly. There was an article on the consumerist not too long ago about how the customer is almost always wrong.

I've walked into an EBGames (Canadian Gamestop) and seen the exact same thing. The funny things is that since I came from a relatively small town, I know the workers there. You see a woman walk in, refuse to buy used, and before I've even left the store (and I don't stay more than an hour in a shop) they're back and demanding a refund. They get all pissed like you're fucking insulting them (which I'm sure my friends would do if it didn't get them fired).

THe funniest part is when a brand new game comes out, in this case it was sould calibur 4, and all the games run out because so many pre-ordered it or, say, it's a FUCKING ANTICIPATED GAME. This woman walks in the daty after it releases and doens't ask nicely, but bitches the man out for not having any on the floor.

So he politely says "I'm sorry ma'am, but apperantly the game was highly sought after. We got sold out in the first day and our next order should in in tomorrow." TOMORROW. Not in a month. THe woman had a shit fit and kicked over three "Used bargain" bins and stormed out.

Um, what the heck does he mean by spiked? Thrown...? Or are there giant spikes conveniently placed about town where he is?

That's still a hell of a lot better than Mc.D's. You get loads more unreasonable dicks and everyone thinks you're a retard for being there. I'll take the occasional asshole customer rather than having one walk through the door every ten minutes.

God, fanboy employees. They suck no matter where they're working, and you can find them at movie, comic, and book stores too. You know, sometimes when I go to the store, one of the employees will wander over, ask me if I'm looking for anything in particular, or do the usual, "Have you heard of this game, if you like XYZ you'll really like this" spiel. Which is fine, I'm cool with that. I actually like recommendations because I don't follow the gaming scene all that closely, and it's entirely likely you may have heard of something I haven't.

But every once in a while I run across one who tries to convince me that the game I want is crap; not because it actually IS crap or defective, but because he likes some other franchise or genre better. I don't know if it's because I'm a chick and they assume I'm buying for someone else. I know I don't exactly look like a typical gamer or whatever. (I've actually had employees hand over games going, "I'm sure your husband/boyfriend/whoever you're buying this for is going to love this.") Seriously, if I'm trying to give you money, for the love of God don't try to enforce your personal tastes on me, especially if you're going to be condescending about it. I've never reported anyone to the manager for it (after all, it really isn't worth the trouble, and hey, the person might be having a bad day or whatever) but it's the quickest way to make me walk out and lose a sale.

Straying Bullet:
Costumer is always king right? No fuck you. This woman had a specific warning that she couldn't get a refund in a new game. If they cannot be reasonable, you stop being as well and kick them out of the store. It cost me a job once because I followed protocol and I don't regret it at all. People need to read and listen on the things that they are going to buy.

Rant over.

Most companies are more than willing to bend or break rules to keep a customer happy. Worst case scenario in this case is they knock ten bucks off the price and sell it as a used game (most likely scenario is they reseal it and sell it as new). The choice between ten dollars and a pissed off repeat customer isn't any kind of a choice.

The story about the mother getting mad because they wouldn't sell a mature rated game to her kids... these are those situations where you calmly explain that you could lose your job or face legal action and under no curcumstances will you bend that rule. In the highly unlikely chance your superior doesn't back you up, it's time to find another job. As long as you don't lose your temper and have witnesses as to what transpired, you're golden. The company might "take her side" in that they'll do something to make her happy, but that's the standard operating procedure when dealing with a customer going up the chain: do something to make them willing to continue buying things at your store.

i must say it was the mom's own fault, she overreacted and blamed others instead of her self.

some people never learn to listen
ps: she ''doesn't buy used games for her kids''?! wtf is wrong with people, its not like someone put hardcore porn on the disc after it was used

Fr]anc[is:
Um, what the heck does he mean by spiked? Thrown...? Or are there giant spikes conveniently placed about town where he is?

he meant she threw the game down, hard, on the floor making it ruined perhabs

I pretty much agree with "pretty much every job in retail is the same". I did my time and after a while I was like I can't live my life like this and went back to college.

I worked two years at an EB (when it was still EB) and man the crazy crap that would happen. I remember once a woman wanted to buy a copy of Windows XP (why we ever had it to me was questionable, it was also the first release that was the office version). I had mention that this version was more for office use then home use to her but she still wanted it. I got the guts out of the back and put in the box and she was upset she was getting the box of the shelf. I told her we have and have had only one copy and this is it. Then she gives me her unsigned credit card. This is where shit gets bad. I ask to see her ID, she refuses. Her friend comes in and she starts to tell her friend that I'm being nasty and rude. In fact up to this point I had very nice and cheerful with her. I tell her I still can't accept her credit card without ID. She picks up the copy of Windows and wings it at me. This she and her friend get nasty with me. I pick up the phone and she was like what are you doing? I was like calling Mall Security. Then she ask why, because she did nothing wrong! I told her not matter what I don't deserve to have something thrown at me. Mall Security came and had her kicked out of the mall. She was fuming and incensed over the whole thing. The mall cop said mostly like she was trying to commit credit card fraud and that I did the right thing, but seriously WTF?

I also have never felt so much sexism then when I worked at a game Store (not even when I worked at a comic book shop). Not from the other employees or managers but from the customers. I still remember a time when a father and young son come in and start asking about the three MLB games that came out recently. In the end I had to say "I'm not sure which one is the best I don't play sports games" to which the young boy who was maybe seven states "You're a girl so you don't know anything about video games". I look up and his father was shaking his head in agreement! I was so pissed. I wanted to be like "I'VE PLAYED GAMES LONGER THEN YOU HAVE BEEN ALIVE!" I just couldn't believe the Father either. In the end they ask my fellow male employee and she said the same thing I did, he didn't play sports games so he didn't know. At least I felt some justification in that.

On the other hand I did have a lot of good experiences. I was lucky to have managers and district managers who where all big gamers and I'm still friends with some of my former managers ten plus years later.

One of my favorite things was selling games to the elderly for them to play themselves. I remember a Grandmother came in and wanted an RPG for her Grandson, and I sold her something (I'm thinking Tales of Destiny). She then tells me she likes to plays these games herself and is looking for something a bit more mature to which I sold her a copy of Persona 2: Eternal Punishment (this was the PSX era and I'm a huge SMT fan girl). Or the time my friend's Grandmother came in to buy him a Dreamcast and bought one for her so she could play Sonic. I hope I'm an awesome old lady when my time comes.

Over all my time in retail while a harsh experience was a good one to have. I think I treat people in retail much better than if I had never done it myself. I really do feel people in retail get little respect and customers have overblown and ill formed expectations of how retail works and expects the little guy to be able to fix their big problems. I always try to be respectful to them and try to get others to be more understanding.

So is this gonna be like a newer updated, less comprehensive text version of Zero Originality?
http://www.dailymotion.com/video/x6wnow_zero-originality-episode-1_videogames

I could join the posting of idiot customer stories, but I think I'll save some times and just post a link to the motherlode of dumb customer stories.

Just feel some solace in knowing so many of us also know the customer is:

www.notalwaysright.com

(Just so I am adding something personal, I've been asked:

'So, how does this...alphabetical system work then?' (about how our cds were arranged in the racks)

'Where it says surname, do I put MY name?' (filling out a loyalty card form)

'Where's the new stuff?' *points to the foot high 'NEW RELEASES' sign next to the entrance and the 20 feet of new stuff on display* 'What? it can't be, it was there last week!'

Damn they made my brain hurt.

The credit card one is classic. I always like when they get annoyed when you ask for their ID when they've written on the back of the card "Ask For ID".

I try my best to be nice to retail employees, especially ones at Gamestop. Maybe it's because I have a soft spot for gaming. I do get a little irritated when I say I don't want to preorder anything and they don't accept my "no" (I don't have a job, so I tend to not preorder because there's no telling if I'll have the money when the game is released), but for the most part they're pretty nice.

There are a couple anecdotes that come to mind. One is when I was buying a game, and the employee was on the phone with a customer. This customer apparently had an Edge card (discount card), and with one of these you get 50% extra when you trade in used games. The employee was trying to explain 50% to this customer, but apparently the customer wasn't understanding the simple concept of it. I felt bad for the employee, because I know he was wanting to insult this guy for being an idiot, especially since his explanation couldn't have been more clear.

Another is when I was in line behind this kid and his father. They had a couple Nickelodeon games to trade in (old ones too, like Monsters Inc.). The employee said he could only give like 75 cents for each of them, and the father gave him a dirty look, muttered something about being ripped off, and left. I've had moments where I declined a trade-in price, but only because I felt the game I was selling was worth more to ME personally than they were offering, even if cash-wise it really isn't valuable. I try not to take it personally.

Fr]anc[is:
Um, what the heck does he mean by spiked? Thrown...? Or are there giant spikes conveniently placed about town where he is?

Thrown down. Hard.

I love that these stores have policies the employees are expected to follow (or get fired) but then they have to magically determine the proper time to ignore the policies. This is despite the fact that it has been made clear they do not have that kind of authority.

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 6 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Registered for a free account here